Changing How Screensaver Logons Function on Windows XP

If you’re already familiar with screensavers, then you know that XP allows you to require users to submit their password to unlock the computer once the screensaver is running. By default, the Unlock Computer dialog box will supply the name of the current user, requiring only a password to be provided to get back to the desktop. This configuration suffers from the same issue as displaying the last username in the Log On to Windows dialog box, since half the required information to access the system is already provided.

To disable XP from displaying the username and require users to provide both a valid username and password to exit the screensaver, yet another Registry edit does the trick. Open Regedit and access the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon key and create a new REG_DWORD value called ForceUnlockLogon. Setting this to a value of 0 requires the user to submit a password only, while a value of 1 requires both the username and password to be resubmitted.

Author: Dan DiNicolo

Dan DiNicolo is a freelance author, consultant, trainer, and the managing editor of He is the author of the CCNA Study Guide found on this site, as well as many books including the PC Magazine titles Windows XP Security Solutions and Windows Vista Security Solutions. Click here to contact Dan.